Twitter Bots

Friday, April 29, 2011


Most of us assume, when trading messages on a social networking site, that we're interacting with a human. But you might be talking to a bot - software designed to, for example, tweet. @JamesMTitus tweeted a lot and gained a bunch of followers. Yet, he (it) was the winning bot in a contest held by The Web Ecology Project. The Project's Tim Hwang explains.

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Comments [10]

Bri okamoto from Raleigh

The fact that humans will believe and connect to twitter bots shows just how people can relate to anything on the internet easier and be deceived very easily. These twitter bots could easily sway peoples opinion or convince them of something the bot thought of.

May. 10 2011 11:49 AM
Calill from Raleigh, NC

I think the twitter bots are an interesting creation, and useful in moderation. It becomes annoying however to see many of them on Trending Topics, spamming the same message over and over with links to different products and corporate advertisements.

May. 06 2011 10:43 AM
Mesha Peebles from school

Twitter Bot
April 29th, 2011

So basically this topic was about a new machine that was made by groups of people in a contest. They called it the twitter bot. The twitter bot was used to talk to random people and try and carry on random conversations and see if they could get a response.

I kinda think its weird to make a twitter bot go and talk to random people about anything. Most people know not to talk to someone they don't know over the internet. So i don't know how they got so many responses to the random stuff the bot was asking.

But they even had the bots talking to each other and they wouldn't know it. The bots could talk about anything for hours and the conversation would never get boring. But the weird thing is how do you get two bots to sit and talk about random things while they are betting on a book on They made a random book worth so much...they made the book worth over 2 million dollars...that's crazy and they never even knew it was two bots betting for the book. I wonder if they even paid all that money for the book.

In conclusion I think this bot is cool for a joke but at the same time it was pointless. Those people just wasted two weeks of their lives doing something that was pointless. But if that's how people want to spend their time I'm not going to stop them.

May. 06 2011 10:30 AM
Kaleisha Moore from school

Twitter Bot
April 29th, 2011
Basically there was a contest to see how many followers the twitter bot could get. And to see if they could get someone to respond to them and carry on a conversation. And sometimes they would even be times where the twitter bots would hold conversations with each other and never know it.

Honestly I think that were was no point in making these bots. They are just wasting electricity that could be used for something else. All they are really doing is making people look foolish and carrying on pointless conversations.

I think that this is a waste of time and these twitter bots could have been used to do something else with twitter like do surveys or something. Talking to random people about random things is pointless. I mean why would you create a bot to have random conversations with people to see if they respond?

In conclusion I really think that they just wasted two weeks of their lives making this so called twitter bot. If they really wanted to talk to someone so bad they should have just went out to the mall or something.

May. 06 2011 10:20 AM
Jejuan Brown from school

Twitter Bot
April 29th 2011

In this video there was a contest of groups who launched twitter bots to interact with all different types of people on twitter. The twitter bot could hold conversations for hours and no one who expect it to be a machine. This bot would bring up random conversations about anything.

I honestly don't see the point in why they made these bots. I think they are pointless and a waste of time. All they are doing is playing with someone's emotions and making them look foolish.

People where really responding to the bot like its a actual people. I think that's the crazy thing because they should have known it wasn't someone else on the other side of computer.

Basically when i first heard they were making twitter bots to talk to people like me that made me wonder who I'm talking to. But still honestly i still don't see the point to these bots.

May. 06 2011 10:11 AM
emmaneul period 2 from school

twitter bot
April 29th ,2911

There were bots launched on twitter to respond to other people to bring people together socially. or was it made to have random conversation to random people for pointless conversation.people rally think there is somebody on the other side of that screen talking.

Personally i think the person that made those bots has no life what so ever. What is the point of making those bots to begin with? What is the world coming to that we cant talk to people ourselves but we can make a bot to talk for you.

but the people actually responds to the bot like its a real live person..honestly i think you can tell when its somebody on the other side of the computer.but the person was obviously smart enough to know that people will respond to his bot and know how to make one, because i don't.

in conclusion like i said there is no point of making bots.Talk to the people yourself.

May. 06 2011 10:09 AM
Peter from New Zealand

Tim is referring to this blog post where the author discovered competing vendor bots on Amazon. Very cool stuff.

May. 03 2011 05:01 AM
Willem Vanden Broek from Ann Arbor, Michigan

Amazon doesn't have competitive bidding on books. Perhaps the interviewee was thinking of EBay.

May. 02 2011 04:39 AM
Charles Richey from Dale, Texas

This segment interested me. I thought there was one aspect missing; the internet has one aspect that has an obscure but important economic name. It has the problem of "the commons". Briefly: if anything is available free or nearly free, it will be used to the point of becoming useless. The overgrazing of free public grasslands is the usual example. But the internet is so crowded with spam, absurd junk, ego blogs, silly experiments, blogbots, blogbots on blogbots, that there is nothing of trivial value excluded. Why not bots talking to bots to infinity. Experimenters have no reason for restraint. Is there a social cost to too many such users. What is it? There eventually has to be such a cost? What?

May. 01 2011 06:17 PM
clopha deshotel from Bridgeport CT

This story has me looking at my vacuum cleaning bot in a new light.

Apr. 30 2011 07:51 AM

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